Old versus new. Classic versus modern. Original versus retro. It all centers on the notion of using company origins to inform the future. In the case of automotive sculpture, designers are no strangers to using classic sheet metal to inspire future product. And here we have it, spotted in the heart of SOHO, an older Silver Spur and a brand spanking new Ghost sitting in close proximity to one another for easy comparison. Hey, you gotta love New York right? Sure, the now dated Spur won’t go down in history for being one of the brand’s most coveted or collectable models, but, like the Ghost that succeeded it, both vehicles are stately, powerful, whisper quiet, lavish as lavish can be and were clearly envisioned to be the ultimate status symbol for any driver deep pocketed enough to possess the keys. The trend toward sheer and utter opulance was followed closely despite the 20+ year age difference and varying design details. A Rolls Royce is a Rolls Royce after all.
A little known fact…the Silver Spur, as it’s known in Long Wheel Base form (SWB = Silver Spirit), was the first RR to feature the retractable Spirit of Ecstasy.
Acrylic on canvas - 32” x 20”
President Obama’s John Hancock on the NASA Authorization Act 2010 has officially retired the Shuttle orbiter fleet that included names like Discovery, Endeavor and Atlantis, to name a few. But that doesn’t negate all of the brave astronauts and amazing technical achievements that the program has seen over the years. To pay homage, our vey own photorealist Bob Petillo has crafted this amazing piece, aptly named ”Shuttle Launch”. Check out the awe-inspiring reflection coming off the fender of this gorgeous ’40 Ford and see what the man with the paint brush had to say…
“What can be more American than the space shuttle? It looks like that reflection is going to turn into a big blur by the time the vibrations reach the car. Of course, no car gets close enough to a launch for all this to actually happen, so I conceptualized the painting, put it together like a puzzle and pulled it off. It looks just like a photo, lens prisms and all. It’s always more than just copying a picture. For some paintings, I take as many as a hundred photos and put it all together.”
Another great one Bob. Thanks for sharing!
Ever wonder how movie set designers achieve such period-correct looks for their films? Well, here’s how they do it. Rent a bunch of old cars and line the streets of NYC with them. Or at least that’s what director David Chase is doing in shooting his yet-to-be-named film about rock & roll in the 1960s. I stumbled onto the NYC movie set walking home from work the other day. The whole street, 26th b/t 5th & 6th, was lined with the likes of Checkers, Falcons, Beetles and Mustangs. It was a thoroughly enjoyable experience, like a time warp in the heart of Chelsea.
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We’ve spotted a whole mess of Bel Airs over the years here at Man on the Move. These street finds tend to be of second generation models that resemble the iconic ‘57 Chevy sillouette that has become so engrained into American pop culture throughout the last century. But let’s not forget the stunning first generation models that came out of Detroit between ’50 – ’54. This handsome, well maintained Navy Blue Bel Air sedan is a ’53 and looks quite dashing, striking a stately pose on Horatio Street.
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It’s funny to think that the New York Auto Show used to take place in the same location Manhattanites currently buy organic cheese and locally grown produce. That’s right, between ’56 and ’87, the big apple auto show was held at the former New York Coliseum in Columbus Circle. This particular show guide, from way back in ’64, is a real blast from the past. You’ve got to love all the colorful ads, each optimistic and excited for the future in their approach, art direction and treatment of the vehicles. Long before quick hits on Twitter, these were times when print ads were king and consumers had attention spans long enough to read them. Iconic models now coveted by enthusiasts, museums and collectors - like the GTO, Shelby Cobra, and Jaguar E-Type – line the pages of this 45+ year-old show guide as new models. If only we could turn back the clock and grab a few of these collectibles while they were still new and somewhat attainable.
We’ll work on getting a time travel device built. In the meantime, mark your calendars…the 2011 show is right around the corner. Perhaps there will be some future classics on display.
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I was walking out of Cafe Mogador after a tasty Moroccan feast and spotted this disco beauty chilling out front. People were busting neck snaps left and right to catch an eyeful of this brilliant homage to 1970s American excess. The color, a lustrous clay hue, really pops against the dark urban backdrop. When you think of modern coupes and what they stand for – sporty, nimble, tightly wrapped sheet metal, etc – its kind of funny to think of this yacht-sized grand tourer in the same light. But then again, this baby is all about the cruise, not the corner.
Have a great weekend!
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This December, a good friend called expressing his interest in a Buenos Aires bird hunting trip. This particular friend and I get together two or three times a year and always manage to find an adventure to leap head first into. The trek to BA and South America never materialized for various reasons and schedules, but I was elated when he called a few weeks ago and said he had a week off and wanted to drive.
With that we booked flights out to Vegas, secured a BMW 330 convertible and headed off on an adventure into the American Southwest. The trip started out rocky when the rental company informed us that the previous customer had totaled our Bimmer and we had been relegated to a Mustang GT Convertible. We weren’t thrilled about the vehicular curveball but, life is short, and we quickly made the best of it. After some gratuitous haggling, we hopped in, dropped the top and headed for free pastures like Thompson and Kerouac before us.
The Hoover Dam, a snowy hike through the Grand Canyon, top down in 40 degree temperatures with 90 knots of wind chill, watching Flagstaff co-eds bar hopping, locking the keys in the trunk at Monument Valley only to find them in a garbage can, sleet and windswept rain down 163 to Phoenix where we were greeted with a hot steam and a swim at the Ritz, heading west through the Painted Desert and a magnificent sunset to greet us back in Vegas just as the lights were in full bloom. Full circle, hours of conversation, those beautiful girls working at the In and Out in Kingman, Arizona, and Jack White blasting through the speakers of our trusty American steed. It’s all part of the cleansing process needed to shake off that dirty Manhattan air for myself and the pressures of the music industry for my pal.
Funny thing is most of the people we saw out there were foreigners. If you’re an American, you owe it to yourself to shred the fabric of your trappings and see the land of the Navajo, the Duke and all the rest that crafted that original tale of rugged individualism. There is no place on earth like the American Southwest and penetrating it at ninety miles an hour will revitalize the soul and serve as a high octane reminder of what it means to be free.
Two good friends, one V8 convertible and the great wide open… there’s nothing quite like it.
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Shooting-brakes are very hot right now. High end examples from BMW, MB and Ferrari, yes Ferrari, broke cover at this week’s Geneva Motor Show. They represent a high level of utility by way of a handsome, sporty 2-door wrapper. This 1970 example from MG, spotted in Chelsea, is one of the models that helped shape the breed of 2+2 sports cars. The innovative greenhouse, combining the sloping rear window with the rear deck lid, was penned by the legendary design mavens at Pininfarina. It fuses sexy coupe design cues with the functional elements of a wagon. As I’m sure you can agree, they did a good job of making a “station wagon” appear sexier than most. We can only hope all of the European shooting brake debuts going on in Geneva make their way over to U.S. shores in the very near future. Fingers crossed.
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All of my usual spots were closed, and I found myself walking in circles trying to find a bite on a brisk, flat President’s Day when a glimpse of a floating red vehicle caught my eye. I proceeded down the desolate, salty sidewalk in Queens and found this pristine 25th Anniversary Edition Lamborghini Countach strapped to a rusty black trailer. It’s not as if the hyper exotic 1980s artifact is inconspicuous or anything. This fine example looks as good as the day it rolled out of the factory in Sant’Agata Bolognese.
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We’ve already spotted his Ducati in Portland. Now we have this four-wheelin Defender in NYC to match. The camo doesn’t really help the classic ute to blend into the urban back drop, but it sure looks cool.
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